UPDATE: Initial conclusions are that Horowitz identifies a lot of errors, mistakes, problems, procedures that were not followed, and so on, but fails to bring it home. It's a hefty black eye for the reputation of the FBI but doesn't really offer consequences other than suggesting a lot of performance reviews. It's not a whitewash, more like a greywash.
As for Horowitz himself, this report combined with the Clinton email report strongly suggests that Horowitz (an Obama appointee, remember) is playing a sacrificial defense game. He's admitting what he has to, doesn't have all the necessary information, and refusing to draw the obvious conclusions.
There's some evidence for it. This is one area of the Russia Hoax that we haven't seen fully explored and revealed yet; hopefully Barr and Durham will find enough information to legally (ie, with warrants) flip over this rock.
Unfortunately, as in this case, McCarthy doesn't always get it. There is no conspiracy theory that "Ukraine hacked the DNC email accounts" that Trump bought into. Here are the facts:
There is an argument that the DNC emails were leaked to Wikileaks by an insider rather than hacked. The likely candidate for the leaker is Seth Rich, a DNC staffer found murdered in DC after the publication of the emails. The only person who likely knows, Wikileaks founder Assange, has said nothing to contradict this and some things that seem to support it, including offering a reward for information leading to Rich's murderer. There is strong evidence that the emails were leaked (copied to a local USB device) rather than hacked (and transferred over the internet).
The involvement of Seth Rich is speculation. The conclusion that the server was hacked comes entirely from Crowdstrike (no one else has examined the server) and is forensically weak. Crowdstrike has a history of forensically mis-attributing things to Russian hackers, and Hillary Clinton was running an operation to tie Trump to Russians and election interference. That's a strong motive for misrepresenting the source of the emails, and preventing examination of the evidence (ie, the server) by neutral parties.
The Ukraine angle also comes from Crowdstrike, which has connections to the Ukraine and may have physical possession of the "hacked" server. Examination of the server would probably (if the evidence has not been destroyed at this point) prove or disprove the hack versus leak theory. Given that companies' links to the Ukraine, it is not unreasonable for Trump to ask Ukraine for help investigating Crowdstrike's involvement in the 2016 elections and possession of evidence related to the DNC hack.
That angle is not proven, but it's not a conspiracy theory either, and asking for evidence to determine the truth is not a characteristic of conspiracy theorists.
About the police officers who will confiscate our assault weapons...
For all of the leftist gun control fetishists who love to fantasize about getting their jackboots on and stomping all over the People, here's a wakeup call. The police won't go along with your gun confiscation schemes. At least, not universally.
DHS wants to implement mandatory facial recognition at the border
Before you blame Trump, note the "required by statute" part. I still don't like it, but they already have your picture. I just don't see it doing enough good to outweigh the inevitable false positives.
(They give a 99% match rate, which sounds good, but that's only checking the much smaller pool of non-citizens; if a million US citizens get checked that's 10,000 mismatches even assuming the error rate holds up after you increase the candidate pool of matches dramatically).
A somewhat new and possibly effective gun rights argument
This one is on the practical side and might reach moderates who support "universal background checks": the FBI is already failing to complete hundreds of thousands of background checks on gun sales. They just can't keep up with the load from lawful gun owners buying guns at dealers. Not only does this not lead to hundreds of thousands of killings a year, how could they possibly keep up with the additional millions of law abiding gun sales that legally do not go through an FFL?
They can't, obviously. At least not with the existing system.
Svetlana Lokhova gets into the SpyGate investigation
Her information and details suggest Halper played a central role -- and was paid for it with tax dollars via the Office of Net Assessment. The CIA was likely behind Halper's involvement, seeking to convince the FBI to open an investigation that could be used to keep surveillance on Trump active after the NSA's access got shut down. Steele's claimed Russian sources may well have been filtered through Halper at best -- and just made up by Halper or others at worst.
Over at Meaning In History, they are reading the Schiff report. Among many other bits of horror, the report indicates that Schiff has been obtaining the phone records of his own committee members (specifically Congressman Devin Nunes and aides), the personal attorney to the President Rudy Giuliani, and journalists (specifically John Solomon).
This strikes me as hugely significant. Once more the Democrats are spying on their political opponents for political purposes, and they are doing it brazenly. Either they are in a desperate panic over what is about to come out about SpyGate, or... they have been doing this all along, and somehow it never got exposed previously. Or perhaps both.
The even briefer summary: New York laws make it effectively illegal to transport firearms -- even legally owned and licensed under New York laws -- outside of the home. There are narrow exceptions for going directly to and from a range, and if you have the political pull you can in theory get a permit to carry with fewer restrictions.
I haven't had a chance to read the transcript yet (it's 81 pages!) but early reports suggest Roberts may be going wobbly. That would be bad. On the other hand, Second Amendment Foundation reports cautious optimism.
Some things to look for. The bottom line is that we're not going to see a lot of useful information outside the FISA itself. Horowitz has limited jurisdiction. Early reports suggest at least one criminal referral for making material changes that falsified evidence directly connected to that FISA. We may see more of that where the evidence is clear (eg, the 302s in the Flynn case). Mostly, though, Horowitz will be looking at what the FBI did with the information they received, whether the procedures were followed, whether and when those involved learned of potential problems with the information, or if there was clear evidence of misconduct in how it was handled.
In my opinion there is ample evidence already known to support multiple criminal referrals on those elements.
Horowitz will likely also deliver recommendations to improve policies and procedures around the FISA process.
It will be up to Durham to investigate (and hopefully prosecute) the role of the CIA and other intelligence agencies in presenting information to the FBI. Individuals like Stefan Halper and "Azra Turk" may be in a grey area where they may be FBI or CIA assets. Individuals like Mifsud are likely outside of Horowitz's reach, but Durham is known to be looking into that side of things.
In short: Horowitz is likely to focus on the FBI/DOJ side of things, leaving the origins of the matter and any NSA/CIA/State Dept involvement to Durham.
It's worth noting that in addition to the likely criminal referral around Clinesmith's alleged document edits, Lisa Page is starting a PR spin campaign prior to the report. That probably means she looks pretty bad in it.